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Every six months or so, depending on what’s going on in my life, I have a Knock-Down. If you’re not familiar with the concept, it’s kind of like a melt-down. Though it may involve a grown-up version of a temper tantrum, it mostly looks like me trying to carry too many things—burdens that are both my own and others’—and I finally get knocked down to the floor, pinned under the figurative weight. In this particular case, the “floor” was the backseat of my car which was not running but parked in the garage with all the lights off. I just needed a few minutes.


The problem with me is that I forget that I can’t do everything. I take on the troubles and tribulations of my kids and friends and whatever other hot mess is brewing around me, forgetting that I’m not equipped to fix it all. When I fail to repair what’s broken, I beat myself up. I tell myself, “You are not enough,” and that’s actually true. My issue is that I don’t like that reality—the reality of being inadequate.


When I had my most recent Knock-Down, I received a word there on the floor of that dark backseat. It was the same thing the Apostle Paul heard from the Lord when he asked God three times to take away his “thorn in the flesh,” some sickness or temptation or persecution which plagued him. God told Paul, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” When those words cropped up in my mind, I was frustrated and bereft, so I questioned them. “Sufficient?” I asked God. “What kind of word is that? That sounds like it’s barely enough…just adequate. Where’s the abundance?”


Then I heard the word that scared me—enough. Maybe it was God saying, “That’s enough of your whining, young lady.” Or maybe He was saying “Daughter, you can never do enough. You can never be perfect enough for your kids or be perfect enough as a Christ-follower. You are not enough, which is why I sent my Son. This is about My grace, not your competency.”


It’s a popular notion to say “I’m enough,” but what about when you’re feeling 100 miles shy of the mark. When I say that I’m enough, then it’s all about me. It implies that I can almost make it there on my own. So all I have to do is just admit the slight discrepancy in reaching my goal this time and learn how to fake my aptitude the other 364 days of the year. But the problem with this plan is that I’ll forget how much I need Him. At least I’ll forget until I’m forced to remember. Until the walls of my own self-reliance come crashing down around me, broken bricks and debris hitting my arms as I shield my face and run out of the wreckage. And I’ll wonder where I’ve gone wrong. How did someone so efficient and capable allow these cracks to develop? That’s when I realize that it’s way past time to run up the white flag. I surrender.


It’s time to say that I don’t just need God to plug up the holes in the dam I’ve built. I need Him to part the waters.


I don’t just need God to clean the smudges on my glasses. I need Him to heal me of my blindness.


I don’t just need God to cut up my meat into bite-sized pieces and butter my bread for me. I need Him to make manna rain from the sky.


I’m not enough. It’s true. “Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.” (2 Corinthians 12:9-10)


Or as the old hymn says it: “I need Thee every hour, Most gracious Lord; No tender voice like Thine can peace afford. I need Thee, oh, I need Thee; Every hour I need Thee. Oh, bless me now, My Savior! I come to Thee.”



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